DEVELOPMENT OF TOURISM IN INDIA

Early Development
The first conscious and organized efforts to promote tourism in India were made in 1945 when a
committee was set up by the Government under the Chairmanship of Sir John Sargent, the then
Educational Adviser to the Government of India (Krishna, A.G., 1993). Thereafter, the
development of tourism was taken up in a planned manner in 1956 coinciding with the Second
Five Year Plan. The approach has evolved from isolated planning of single unit facilities in the
Second and Third Five Year Plans. The Sixth Plan marked the beginning of a new era when
tourism began to be considered a major instrument for social integration and economic
development.
But it was only after the 80’s that tourism activity gained momentum. The Government took
several significant steps. A National Policy on tourism was announced in 1982. Later in 1988,
the National Committee on Tourism formulated a comprehensive plan for achieving a
sustainable growth in tourism. In 1992, a National Action Plan was prepared and in 1996 the
National Strategy for Promotion of Tourism was drafted. In 1997, the New Tourism
Policyrecognises the roles of Central and State governments, public sector undertakings and
the private sector in the development of tourism were. The need for involvement of Panchayati
Raj institutions, local bodies, non-governmental organizations and the local youth in the creation
of tourism facilities has also been recognized.
Present Situation and Features of Tourism in India
Today tourism is the largest service industry in India, with a contribution of 6.23% to the national
GDP and providing 8.78% of the total employment. India witness’s more than 5 million annual
foreign tourist arrivals and 562 million domestic tourism visits. The tourism industry in India
generated about US$100 billion in 2008 and that is expected to increase to US$275.5 billion by
2018 at a 9.4% annual growth rate. The Ministry of Tourism is the nodal agency for the
development and promotion of tourism in India and maintains the "Incredible India" campaign.
According to World Travel and Tourism Council, India will be a tourism hotspot from 2009-2018,
having the highest 10-year growth potential. As per the Travel and Tourism Competitiveness
Report 2009 by the World Economic Forum, India is ranked 11th in the Asia Pacific region and
62nd overall, moving up three places on the list of the world's attractive destinations. It is ranked
the 14th best tourist destination for its natural resources and 24th for its cultural resources, with
many World Heritage Sites, both natural and cultural, rich fauna, and strong creative industries
in the country. India also bagged 37th rank for its air transport network. The India travel and
tourism industry ranked 5th in the long-term (10-year) growth and is expected to be the second
largest employer in the world by 2019. The 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi are expected
to significantly boost tourism in India further. [www.ibef.org/industry/tourismhospitality.aspx]
Moreover, India has been ranked the "best country brand for value-for-money" in the Country
Brand Index (CBI) survey conducted by Future Brand, a leading global brand consultancy. India
also claimed the second place in CBI's "best country brand for history", as well as appears

A National Policy on tourism was announced in 1982. The approach has evolved from isolated planning of single unit facilities in the Second and Third Five Year Plans. thus registering a compound annual growth of 12. public sector undertakings and the private sector in the development of tourism. The other major development that took place was the setting up of the India Tourism Development Corporation in 1966 to promote India as a tourist destination and the Tourism Finance Corporation in 1989 to finance tourism projects. In 1992. local bodies. a National Action Plan was prepared and in 1996 the National Strategy for Promotion of Tourism was drafted. . The proposed policy recognizes the roles of Central and State governments. In 1997. non-governmental organizations and the local youth in the creation of tourism facilities has also been recognized. leather goods. Later in 1988. The estimates available through surveys indicate that nearly forty per cent of the tourist expenditure on shopping is spent on such items. 21 Government-run Hotel Management and Catering Technology Institutes and 14 Food Craft Institutes were also established for imparting specialized training in hoteliering and catering. India made it to the list of "rising stars" or the countries that are likely to become major tourist destinations in the next five years.8 per cent. domestic tourism has grown substantially during the last one decade. But it was only after the 80’s that tourism activity gained momentum. Growth Domestic tourism is as old as the Indian society. river and mountain peaks for adventure tourism. heritage trains and hotels for heritage tourism. The other attractions include beautiful beaches.among the top 5 in the best country brand for authenticity and art & culture. centers of pilgrimage for spiritual tourism. forests and wild life and landscapes for eco-tourism. Its visitor-friendly traditions. the National Committee on Tourism formulated a comprehensive plan for achieving a sustainable growth in tourism. The Government took several significant steps. Altogether. a draft new tourism policy in tune with the economic policies of the Government and the trends in tourism development was published for public debate. Yoga. Tourism development in India has passed through many phases. Tourist Attractions India is a country known for its lavish treatment to all visitors. ayurveda and natural health resorts also attract tourists. According to available statistics. no matter where they come from. ivory and brass work are the main shopping items of foreign tourists. snow. led by the United Arab Emirates. jewellery. and the fourth best new country for business. China. The need for involvement of Panchayati Raj institutions. It increased to 167 million in 1998 from just 64 million in 1990. varied life styles and cultural heritage and colourful fairs and festivals held abiding attractions for the tourists. The Indian handicrafts particularly. At Government level the development of tourist facilities was taken up in a planned manner in 1956 coinciding with the Second Five Year Plan. technological parks and science museums for science tourism. carpets. The draft policy is now under revision. The Sixth Plan marked the beginning of a new era when tourism began to be considered a major instrument for social integration and economic development. and Vietnam.

From this level it rose to 2. India Tourism Development Corporation. Tourism also contributed Rs.7.011 crore.540 crore in 1998 from Rs. During 1998-99.24. Buddha Mahotsav was organized from 24th October to 8th November 1998. Indian Institute of Skiing and Mountaineering and the National Institute of Water Sports. the Ministry of Tourism made special efforts to publicize the tourism potential of India. The hotel and tourism-related industry has been declared a high priority industry for foreign investment which entails automatic approval of direct investment up to 51 per cent of foreign equity and allowing 100 per cent non-resident Indian investment and simplifying rules regarding the grant of approval to travel agents. tour operators and tourist transport operators. Boosting Tourism Some of the recent initiatives taken by the Government to boost tourism include grant of export house status to the tourism sector and incentives for promoting private investment in the form of Income Tax exemptions. A special calendar of .241 crore during 1998-99 towards the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Indian Institute of Tourism and Travel Management. employment generation through tourism was estimated at 14.79 million. Celebrations During the Golden Jubilee celebrations of India as a Republic. The Wong La Millennium was held from April 1999 to January 2001. Foreign exchange earnings from the tourism sector during 1998-99 were estimated at Rs. National Council for Hotel Management and Catering Technology. products. The first-ever Indian Tourism Day was celebrated on January 25. The important ones are development of infrastructure.12.11. It was just around 17 thousand in 1951. The Year 1999 was celebrated as Explore India Millennium Year by presenting a spectacular tableau on the cultural heritage of India at the Republic Day Parade and organizing India Tourism Expo in New Delhi and Khajuraho. Thrust Areas In order to speed up the development of tourism in the country several thrust areas have been identified for accomplishment during the Ninth Five Year Plan (1997-2002). interest subsidy and reduced import duty. wildlife and beach resorts and streamlining of facilitation procedures at airports. Organization The organizations involved in the development of tourism in India are the Ministry of Tourism with its 21 field offices within the country and 18 abroad. winter sports. Tourism receipts on the other hand have grown at a phenomenal rate of 17 per cent to Rs. human resource development and facilitating private sector participation in the growth of infrastructure. trekking.36 million in 1998.7 crore in 1951. 1998.The growth of inbound tourism since Independence has been quite impressive. poverty alleviation and sustainable human development. Economic Impact Tourism has emerged as an instrument of employment generation. Tourism has thus become the second largest net foreign exchange earner for the country.

increasing trains and railway connectivity to important tourist destinations. But much more remains to be done. Much has been achieved by way of increasing air seat capacity. An official website of the Ministry of Tourism has also been created for facilitating dissemination of information on tourism. Indian tourism has vast potential for generating employment and earning large sums of foreign exchange besides giving a fillip to the country’s overall economic and social development. accessibility to tourist destinations. To sum up. Since tourism is a multi-dimensional activity. it would be necessary that all wings of the Central and State governments. and basically a service industry. Constraints The major constraint in the expansion of international tourist traffic to India is non-availability of adequate infrastructure including adequate air seat capacity. particularly. four-lining of roads connecting important tourist centers and increasing availability of accommodation by adding heritage hotels to the hotel industry and encouraging paying guest accommodation. accommodation and trained manpower in sufficient number. . poor hygienic conditions and incidents of touting and harassment of tourists in some places are factors that contribute to poor visitor experience. due to inadequate infrastructural facilities.events has been formulated for highlighting contributions to Millennium events by various places in all the States. Poor visitor experience. private sector and voluntary organizations become active partners in the Endeavour to attain sustainable growth in tourism if India is to become a world player in the tourist industry.